What Does the Bible Say About Speaking in Tongues?

    Have you ever heard anyone speak in tongues? Some of us have, but many of us haven’t. So what does it mean to speak in tongues and what does the Bible have to say about this phenomenon?

    The ability to speak in tongues is first mentioned in Mark 16:17 by Jesus: “These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues.” This is, to the best of my knowledge, the only time speaking in tongues is mentioned in the four gospels.

    From this verse, we learn that speaking in tongues is one sign of those who believe in Jesus Christ. The word “new” is the Greek word kainos and means “fresh, unused, of a new kind, uncommon or unheard of.”

    This verse has sparked much controversy. Some believe that “new tongues” just means a language that’s new to the person speaking. Others believe that “new tongues” refers to a language never before heard on the earth, the language of heaven. Biblical evidence seems to support both beliefs and still the controversy remains.

    We find the next mention of speaking in tongues in Acts 2:

    And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance. Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven. And when this sound occurred, the crowd came together, and were bewildered because each one of them was hearing them speak in his own language. They were amazed and astonished, saying, ‘Why, are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we each hear them in our own language to which we were born?’ (Acts 2:4-8).

    From this passage, we learn that the ability to speak with other tongues comes from the Holy Spirit. There were at least 16 separate nations represented in Jerusalem, each with their own language, when this event occurred. Each person present heard these believers speaking in their own language.

    Now we move on to 1 Corinthians. Paul takes chapters 12-14 in 1 Corinthians to address spiritual gifts, including many verses about speaking in tongues. Paul begins by mentioning tongues in a list of spiritual gifts (1 Cor. 12:8-10). Later, in verses 28-31, Paul makes it clear that not every believer receives every gift and encourages believers to desire the greater gifts of being apostles, prophets and teachers first.

    Chapter 13 begins with an interesting statement: “If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels.” The word “tongues” is plural, meaning more than one language. The question is, what’s the language of the angels? This is a question I honestly can’t answer–maybe the language of angels is 24/7 praise of God, maybe it’s a new language entirely, maybe it’s both.

    Moving on to chapter 14, Paul makes it clear that when someone speaks in tongues, they speak directly to God (14:2). That said, Paul explains that using the gift of tongues in public is useless if there is no interpretation (14:5-17). This would be like speaking Portuguese to a room full of native Mandarin Chinese speakers. They wouldn’t benefit from what you say unless someone interprets in a language they understand.

    Paul takes the last part of chapter 14 to tell believers that the gift of tongues must always be used in an orderly manner (v. 27). There must be an interpreter present if a public display of tongues is used (v. 27). If there is no interpreter present, then the person with the gift of tongues needs to remain silent in the church, speaking only to themselves and God (v. 28).

    Regardless of what you may have heard, speaking in tongues is not uncontrollable. The Holy Spirit has blessed me to speak in tongues, but I choose to use this gift only in my private prayer time with God or very quietly to myself while praying in a group. Keep in mind, speaking in tongues, like all spiritual gifts, is for blessing and encouraging others–both believers and non-believers–and never for our own importance.

    If you want to learn more about what the Bible says about speaking in tongues, I strongly encourage you to read 1 Corinthians 12-14.

    What do you think about speaking in tongues?

    So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but a prophecy is for a sign, not to unbelievers but to those who believe (1 Corinthians 14:22).

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    Jenn Arman
    Jenn Arman is a youth pastor, freelance writer and blogger. She was born in San Diego, California and raised 2 hours north east in the Inland Empire where she lives with her husband David and their cats. Jenn desires to bring glory to God and a healthy dose of reality to Christians through both writing and preaching. Visit for more on her work. You can also connect with her on and


    1. I find speaking in tongues very interesting. My parents both spoke in tongues before. In a public setting, sometimes it can skip the tongues part and go to directly to the interpreter. That happened once during church- it was pretty cool! I wish I could speak in tongues 🙁

      • Speaking in tongues is interesting, but remember what Paul says and what I talked about briefly above, we are meant to desire greater gifts than speaking in tongues. We need to be content with the gifts that God has given to us. I speak in tongues, but God has also gifted me to teach and prophesy and I consider those to be greater blessings because He trusts me enough to use me to teach others about His word! It isn’t bad to desire other gifts but make sure you don’t let that desire for other gifts keep you from using the ones you already have 🙂

        What gifts has God given to you?

        • The Bible lists the following things as “gifts of the Spirit”:
          Romans 12:6-8 – Prophecy, Service, Teaching, Exhortation, Giving, Leadership & Mercy.
          1 Corinthians 12:8-10 – Administration, Apostle, Discernment, Faith, Healing, Helps/Service/Hospitality, Knowledge, Miracles, Prophecy, Teaching, Tongues, Interpretation of Tongues & Wisdom.
          Ephesians 4 – Apostle, Evangelism, Pastoring/Shepherding, Prophecy & Teaching.

          These are what the Bible lists as “gifts of the Spirit”, but any skills, talents, etc. that we have should be used for the Lord. Colossians 3:23-24 “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.”

        • Speaking in tounges is for EVERYONE. I received it at a Pentecostal church. Alone is not the only place to use your outward showing of the holy spirit. You can use it to pray for people too. If you want the holy ghost then you simply need to ask God. If your not sure how ask your parents. Receiving the holy ghost is also called being baptized in the holy spirit. When you are saved you are filled with the holy spirit and speaking in tounges is one of the many outwards expressions of this. It is the most wonderful experience a Christian can have. I will pray you receive it but only when you are ready.(:

      • Well, I was at my church and as I was praying to God I asked him to pour his spirit upon me and bless me with the gift. I started speaking tounges and I got a random thought, what if my mind was just making this up?? But then my youth pastor said “If you think that speaking in tounges is all in your mind God says, where would this come from then? How would you know this language?” and I said thank you to God for his gift. So anyways to wrap this up, any believer can receive the gift, it may not come right away(my pastor told us a story of how he prayed for a year or so until he got it) but just pray to God and ask him and when he thinks you are ready I guarantee that he will give it to you. 🙂 I hope this helped.

        • I know what you mean about thinking its all in your head or you wondering if you really got it. When I was at church a while back the people that went up received the gift of tongues but over the years this tongue has sounded different and I stutter so I wonder if I am speaking in tongues or I just think I am? My mother’s and grandmother’s tongues are consistent, they sound the same every time and my changes… how am I suppose to know? Do I just pray to God to make it known to me, do I look in the Word? I have wondered this for a while now…

        • 1 Corinthians 13:8-9 “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.”

          1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

          Tounges was a gift given to people long ago, however it isn’t very common anymore. Not everyone has it, because we no longer need it. All we need is faith, hope, and love, and that is enough.

    2. I think that it is a gift from God, and when we speak in tongues it is showing that we are humbling our selfs and giving our selfs to God to use us! Yes there are some people that it is not go God but i have seen people do it a few times in church and it seems like it is from God. Also I know people that do it when they are spending time in the closet with God. Its amazing!!!

    3. I am blessed with an amazing ability to learn different tongues very quickly! I am now fluent in Spanish after 3 years (usually it takes a person over 4 years to do this), and I’m itching to learn more! It is a great way to learn about God’s beautiful world <3

    4. I have been filled with the Holy Spirit and I speak in other tounges, like how you described, like in a language that I can’t understand. 😀 Singing in tongues really blesses me and I can feel the anointing of the Lord on me when I do it 😀

    5. I have a really God-fearing family who loves the Lord with all their heart! Most of them have been given the gift of tongues and it has been a true blessing! On the other hand, personally speaking, I have not spoken in tongues yet. I have a deep desire to do so, and I have been praying for the baptism of the Holy Spirit for a long time now. I just want know how do you awaken the Holy Spirit in your life after you’ve excepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior?….

      • When you accept Jesus as your Savior, that is when the Holy Spirit comes into your life. You don’t need to “awaken” it,as soon as you believe,He is there. However, if you do not see evidence of the fruit of the spirit, ect. in your life, this may mean you’re not saved, or you’re not pursuing God.

    6. “The language of the angels” was just Paul exagerating.
      About the disciples speaking in tongues: It’s like an Asian speaking to a Swede Swedish. Preaching so that they could understand. The crowds saw that those disciples were speaking in languages that they (disciples) were not taught. Then the people knew it was the hand of God.

    7. This is a gift that is promised to everyone. We will notice in scripture there is a sound that accompanies this born-again experience of recieving the Holy Ghost. John 3:8 lets us know that when we are born of spirit, it will be like the wind, we will not see where it comes from or where it goes, but we will hear a sound. The only sound that is mentioned in scripture associated with the holy ghost is the sound of speaking in other tongues. There are more scriptures that reveal the evidence of the holy ghost: John 3:8, Acts 2:4, Acts 10:44-46, Acts 19:6. Romans 8:9-11 says the spirit of christ in us is a neccesity, and if you read Acts 19:1-6 you will see these scriptures record Paul “finding certain disciples” and he asks only two questions (1) Have ye recieved the Holy Ghost? (2) How were you baptized? Why these two questions? Because Paul understood that Jesus had put two things into motion that are absolutely essential-we must be born of water and born of spirit.
      We must understand this is a gift that is promised to everyone. Mark 16:17 says that those that believe SHALL speak with new tongues. So that is just a little word I found to be useful.

        • Girls, I never meant to indicate that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is “only for some”. However I know many people who have received the baptism of the Holy Spirit and do not speak in tongues. I’m not God, so I can’t know for sure that this is a gift for everyone. God gives gifts to us based on His good pleasure and our need. Speaking in tongues is awesome, but people shouldn’t feel bad if they haven’t received that gift.

      • I’m not sure that there’s a sound that is always associated with the Holy Spirit. When I know the Spirit is at work, it’s a feeling. For me it takes the form of a Joy that usually is accompanied by tears because I can’t keep it inside. I don’t think I’ve ever heard anything. And I don’t think that speaking in tongues is for everybody. I don’t believe I’ve ever heard anyone speak in tongues, and yet I know a LOT of people who’ve been blessed with gifts of the holy spirit. But that’s just my opinion. No one can really know these things, I don’t think.

      • I agree with Dee, I don’t think the ability to speak in tongues has any reflection on your belief. I can’t speak in tongues, and I have not met anyone who could. However I have felt the Holy Spirit in my life. It’s a feeling of intence peace, and as Dee said, accompanied with tears of joy.

      • 1 Corinthians 13:8-9 “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.”

        1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

        Tounges was a gift given to people long ago, but it isn’t very common anymore. Not everyone has it, because we no longer need it. All we need is faith, hope, and love, and that is enough.

        • hahahahahha NOT COMMON ANYMORE?!?!?! go here: just because you have not met people who do doesnt mean there arent any. and everyone needs that gift. don’t fall into the trap of thinking you don’t need it.

        • All you need to go to Heaven is the blood of Christ. You don’t need it, it’s far less common now.

        • 1 Cor. 13:10 “But when the end comes, these special gifts will all disappear.” The end it speaks of is in Revelations and that hasn’t happened yet, so tongues is here to stay till then. 😉

    8. My former principle would sometimes speak in tongues. I believe he always translated it for us, but since it was at school is that considered a “public” setting. It probably means for large crowds, right?

    9. God has blessed me with the gift of speaking in tongues, it’s one of the most amazing feelings I’ve ever had, I asked God to bless me with that gift two years before I ever got the gift, I want to encourage for any of you that want to speak in tongues and do not receive at first to not give up, God’s timing is the best timing!!!! 🙂

    10. Great artical! Speaking in tounges is definately an amazing gift of God! Just yesterday, someone in church spoke a message in tounges and then someone else gave an interpretation. Something to keep in mind concerning this topic is not to purue the gift of speaking in tounges but to persue the Giver. If we are truely searching after God then He may choose to give us a spiritial language.

    11. I struggle with faith, so I am not as fortunate. I try to believe, but it gets hard to pray without feeling silly or trouble putting full faith in Yehoshua. I am striving for my purpose. Many people have told me there is something very special about me and I am striving on that saying 🙂 Although, is speaking in tongues easy?

      • i know what you mean by feeling silly when you pray. Maybe you don’t know what to say. You can try just getting out your Bible, opening it, and reading something, maybe God will speak to your heart. Or start by asking God to fill you with the Holy Spirit. In time your relationship with God will strengthen and you will learn more about Him that way!

        • Nellie, Don’t feel like you need to speak all the time when you’re in prayer. Sometimes, God calls us to just be silent and “listen.” If we do all the talking, how can we hear God speak to us when we are too busy talking to listen to Him? Meditating on His word may also help.

      • I would just like to clarify that whether you have the “gift of tounges” is not based on the amount of faith you have. Also, not everybody has the gift of tounges! The Bible is very clear on this, we’re not all gonna have the same gift! Your’s are probably different.

      • I must agree. I actually went to a Pentecostal meeting earlier this year, and started speaking in tongues, but how do we know if we are speaking in tongues or just gibberish? How do I know that it was not just a form of mass hysteria? I am a devout Christian, but I am not sure about this. :/ I believe that being a Christian is believing in Christ and respecting God’s word. I thought Christ came to you if you simply ask him to with all your heart, according to the Bible. I see there are passages about Tongues in the Bible though, but like I said, when people nowadays claim to speak in tongues, are they really speaking a language? Or is it mass hysteria? :/

        • In my church, the pastor told us when an arabic-speaking girl moved there and was a new convert, or something like that. So she and a couple other girls were having a prayer meeting in the small prayer room and when you pray sometimes, you moan and/or cry and such. She was formerly muslim and moaning is of the devil or something to their culture. After that one of the girls started speaking fluent arabic! She understood what she said. I don’t remember the exact words the pastor said she said, but it was someting like:believe in me, I am real…truth… God spoke through that girl to help her see that God is real! So speaking in tounges can be understood by others and maybe it is also only understood by God at other times. Here is some doctrine: 2 Timothy 3:16 says all scripture is profitable for doctrine. So with that, in John 7:38, it says we must recieve the Holy Ghost for salvation. Acts 2:4 says “…and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues…” Remember that Acts 2:39 says “for the promise is unto you, and to your children, and all that are afar off, even as many as the lord our God shall call.” What is the promise? Part of it is recieving the gift of the holy ghost. In Mark 16:17, it says those that believe shall speak with new tongues. A new tongue can be a foriegn langauge or maybe some language only God knows.I think it is both, but it just depends on peoples situations. He will pour out His spirit upon all flesh in the last days–Joel 2:28 and Acts 2:17. The pouring out of his spirt is speaking in tongues!

        • 1_artist – I have been struggling with this too. That is why I have been encouraged to study the scripture on this and pray about it. I would encourage you to read Acts 1 & 2, 1 Cor. 13:1, 1 Cor. 14 (entire chapter), and any other scripture on this subject matter. Then pray about it and maybe even fast about it if it has really been stirring your heart and you can’t seem to find the answers.

        • @LostinParadise – You mentioned “So with that, in John 7:38, it says we must recieve the Holy Ghost for salvation.” Actually, if you read it again it doesn’t say that at all.

          This is what it says in KJV – John 7:38-39 “He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

          The key is in verse 39 where it says “should receive.” This is something that has to be asked for because you are not usually given this gift automatically.

          Therefore, it is important to know that the gift of the Holy Spirit IS NOT a condition of salvation and it is dangerous to make statements like that, so I wanted to help clarify. I’m sure you didn’t mean anything by it or it was worded improperly. No offense.

    12. Can you pray to recieve the gift of speaking in tongues and if so what do you say????? I really want to speak in tongues because i believe it will bring me closer to the Lord so please help and thank you!

      • I disagree. I think that it’s awesome PI is discussing this topic as many Christians find it an uncomfortable topic. It’s part of the Bible and that is why I think it’s important to include it in a Christian site to encourage Christian girls. I just want to say thank you to the person who wrote this article even though I did not agree with everything it said. Lol thank goodness we are all entitled to an opinion of our own!

        • I agree with Abi. I think nothing in the bible should be taboo for a Christian site. and i love the way they did it, basically using only scripture to explain it. and how can a Christian argue with the Word of God? and thank you to the people in charge of this site for not taking sides on comments posted and letting people have their say and share their opinions no matter what they are. PI is a blessing and im so happy to have found a christian site/publication that isn’t afraid to address things that are uncomfortable to some Christians.

        • Even though we all have different opinions on this controversial subject I am so glad this article was written too. I am curious of the other diversifying opinions and why those people with those opinions believe what they do. So, this is very insightful. I was born and raised Catholic but then converted to Pentecostal which was quite a change for me. During my last fast I prayed that God would help give me a desire to be closer to him and since then I have gotten more into my Word and I am learning why I believe what I believe and not just because it is taught to me. I always pray to God to reveal the truth because there are so many religions out there and so many false prophets that I want to be sure I am not swayed away from the truth of God.

      • Yes, you can (: I went to a youth conference this past week and today I was filled with the Holy Spirit and given the gift of tongues. A woman there prayed over me that I would be able to. She said she prayed and prayed for it and it took a while, but eventually God answered her prayer.

      • A spiritual gift is something you get after you get saved that is for the benefit of your church body. I don’t think that having the gift of speaking in tounges will help you get closer to God, try having daily fellowship with Him!

        • Making you closer to God, I don’t know about that. But it does say the gift of tongues will strengthen your relationship with God and by that I think that would make me closer to Him, don’t you?

          1 Corinthians 14:4 “A person who speaks in tongues is strengthened personally in the Lord, but one who speaks a word of prophecy strengthens the entire church.”

    13. I have never heard of anyone speaking in tongues. Is it more common in a certain denomination of churches? I come from an Independent, Fundamental, Traditional Baptist church. I have never heard anyone speak in tongues, or heard of anyone in my church that could do it. I know MANY, MANY people in my church that are very close to the Lord, but they don’t have the “gift” that you spoke of. I’ve been to three Baptist churches, and never heard of anyone that could do it.
      It has never been spoke on, so I’m not sure if I quite understand it. I know on the Pentecost, the Holy Spirit entered the world, and gave many of the disciples the ability to do so; but I thought it was only when the Holy Spirit came into the world, and to get the early church started.

      • i heard that Baptist dont speak in tongues because it is believed to be a gift for the early churches. I have a friend who is Baptist and im Pentecostal (we speak tongues) and my friend was scared to come to my church because she has never heard anyone speak in tongues so she never came. 🙁 i wish she would though! its a great experience! try going to another church and see for yourself! it might be weird or scary at first but if you get that gift, you will feel a unique connection with God! i can promise you that! <3 God bless you!

        • It really is not spoken of in baptist churches. Some baptists believe it was for the old times only. But the lord comes into you when you speak on lounges.

        • I don’t know a whole lot about it because Pentecostal is not a big denomination of church in the town I live in. I actually cannot recall anyone I know that is Pentecostal. We have a few Catholics and Episcopalian. I’d say the largest majority of people in my school go to Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, and community churches. That’s why I’ve never really understood the whole concept of Speaking in Tongues. I’ll read a little more about it from God’s Word and do some research about it.

      • Baptists generally don’t believe in speaking in tongues. They believe it was only for the church in Acts. I’m around all baptist people because I go to christian school, and I’ve heard so much from them saying it’s not for today, and even people making fun of speaking in tongues. I received the gift of tongues today actually, and it was an amazing experience and I could feel the Holy Spirit’s presence. Sometimes it takes a long time and lots of prayer for God to answer and give that gift to you. It’s also called a prayer language, which when you don’t know what else to pray you can speak in tongues and it’s a powerful thing.

      • I also attend a Independent Fundamental Baptist church, and Speaking in tongues is very much frowned upon. I don’t know anyone who can/does it. We often joke at our church that we’re having someone “speak in tongues” when our spanish church extension comes to visit and does a baptism or something. Sometimes the spanish pastor will actually preach in spanish but we always have someone translate it into english.

      • Sry I accidentally clicked publish on my last comment. Lol. So what I meant to say was that the holy ghost is a form of God and the lord is the same yesterday today and tomorrow. So speaking in tounges is for today for sure! Go with your friend to the Pentecostal church. You might be creeped out at first. But once you realize how utterly amazing it is you will want to be a part of it too. 🙂

    14. I think that the gift of “speaking in tongues” could be interpreted in different ways. I don’t really know what it is exactly, but in my church some of the singers seem like they are really talking to God specially between the lyrics of the songs and i can’t always understand what those words are, but i know that God does, and that they are praising Him. <3 i loved this article it was helpful! i am often confused about this topic!

    15. I think speaking in Tongues is an AMAZING gift with God…I go to Bible College and one of my professors said that speaking in tongues is like a secret language between you and God. No one can understand it BUT God..not even satan. And speaking in tongues gives the Holy Spirit to talk to God about all ur problems everything that is on your heart. I thought it was AMAZING! its kinda like having a secret language with friends when u talk on the phone. I was given the gift of speaking tongues when i was 12… and for me it was one of the most life changing experiences ever! It felt like i became a huge step closer to God. praying for me became a way more personal and more spiritual experience. it wasnt boring prayers were filled with something special. And im sooo thankful to God and the Holy Spirit for giving me that gift of speaking in tongues! <3 <3 i think every Christian should be able to experience the connection and joy from speaking in tongues! <3

    16. I don’t know if anyone is still reading comments on here, but I wanted to say why I’m obsessed with speaking in tongues. In a way, it kinda freaks me out a bit, because it’s supernatural, but I also really badly want to do it. And this is why. I feel like, speaking in tongues is the most obvious sign that you are saved and that God is pleased with you. Like the other Holy Spirit gifts aren’t as cut and clear ya know?

      • Yup!….I’m still reading comments!…lol…And I totally agree with you!….I used to be the same way, but now I have given it all to Jesus! If he wants to bless me with this gift, so be it! If he doesn’t, so be it!….The Word says, “Seek first the kingdom of God, and everything else will follow”. Just keep seeking the Lord, and ya never know, through HIS goodness and mercy, he’ll probabaly give you that gift!…<3

        • The baptism of the Holy Spirit isn’t salvation, but it is a powerful tool that the bible states we have to “ask for it” and then it will come upon you and with that those people that spoke in tongues could cast out demons, etc. My pastor spoke of another evangelist who wanted to reach drug users and there was a man who was struggling with staying clean and asked the pastor how could he stay clean after he backslid and went back to drugs and then came clean and came back to the Lord. The pastor told him that he should speak to the others who have been delivered from drugs and how they did it and what the commonality was within that group. The man learned that all those who had been delivered from drugs have been baptized in the Holy Spirit of speaking in tongues. He had not asked for this gift yet and upon doing so, he was delivered. There was another man in that group that spoke with tongues that had tried to go back to drugs when he backslid but he said that he didn’t get the same high he felt and in fact, God had taken away the feeling that the drug gave him. Upon that and having the guilt of being involved in the sin, he came back to Christ and never touched another drug.

          So, it seems to me that this baptism makes you able to kick the habit or other things that you might otherwise return to. Tongues seem to make you stronger spiritually but it doesn’t make you more spiritual. Acts 1:8 speaks of how the power of the Holy Spirit comes upon them.

          Another note to add is that you don’t automatically get the gift of the Holy Spirit when you get saved unless you ask for it. I can’t remember which verse this is, but came across it just last night in service.

          Acts 1:5 speaks about the baptism of the spirit and that it is different than just general water baptism too.

      • Yeah, I get where you’re coming from. But listen, if you determine whether you’re saved or not or whether you have the Holy Spirit or not based on whether you speak in tongues or not, you can undermine the Gospel. I’m not saying this is what you’re thinking or feeling, but when some people do that it’s kinda like saying you need something else besides Jesus’ blood on the cross. Sorry if I didn’t word this as clearly as I could’ve, but do you kinda get what I’m saying?

    17. I go to a non-denominational church, but they are very into the spiritual aspect of it because afterall, our God is a supernatural God, many people at my church speak in tongues and it is encouraged, but they don’t think any less of those who don’t speak in it!, I personally want that deep connection with God, speaking in tongues is having a deeper, more intimate relationship with God and the Holy Spirit and I desire that! I have actually been prayed over twice for the gift of tongues and the baptisim of the Holy Spirit and I continue to pray daily about it, receiving the Holy Spirit and asking for that deeper relationship, so far nothing has really happened with it, but I will wait patiently for God’s timing! 🙂

    18. I’ve grown up in a non denominational church. My church is also Penacostal, charismatic, word of faith, etc.! I absolutely LOVE it!! Everytime I go back there I fall more and more in love with it. God is real. He is good. And we can have the life the apostles had! I’ve experienced it. And I can speak in tongues. It’s a wonderful gift, that no one should be afraid of! God is awesome!! 😀

    19. There is a difference between learning another language and speaking in tongues. The latter was among the divine gifts mentioned in 1 Corinthians, and the letters to the Corinthians can’t be taken out of the historical context. The Corinthians were former adherents to the Babylonian Mystery Religions which began at the Tower of Babel with Nimrod (Noah’s great-grandson), Semerimus (his wife), and Tammuz (her child). The temple Aphrodite (a fertility goddess) at Corinth was dedicated to the Greek form of Semerimus. Two key rituals practiced by the Corinthian mystery religions were ecstasy and enthusiasm. In these rituals, vigil, fasting, tense religious expectancy, stirring music, whirling dances, physical stimuli, chanting, meditation, incense, revivalistic fervor and more were all used to induce a condition of euphoria where the worshiper was lifted into an abnormal state of consciousness. In Ecstasy, the worshiper experienced an exhilarating feeling of closeness, union, and oneness with their god and a practice called “glossei” or speaking in false tongues, an ecstatic babble which they felt was a heavenly prayer language, the language of the gods, above mere human speech. The Corinthians, who were once led away by these false experiences, were bringing them into the church and mistaking them for the works of the Holy Spirit. Paul’s message was that the simple fact that a person has had an experience, that they experienced visions, dreams, revelations, spoke in tongues, or felt euphoria, peace, joy, exhilaration, and an emotional closeness to God does not automatically guarantee that the experience was from God, even if the person is a Christian. Scripture, not experience is the test of truth. Since the Corinthians were guilty of operating their spiritual gifts in ignorance and of assuming that the false religious experiences of the Mystery Religions were genuine spiritual gifts, Paul instructed them concerning how to distinguish the true from the false. The first test of spiritual gifts was a doctrinal test, not experience or miracles. The first doctrine of Christianity, Christology, was the first test. Tongues is the supernatural ability to speak in a human language which the speaker had never learned. There are two views on the nature of this gift. The Heavenly Prayer Language view. This view sees Tongues as ecstatic, angelic, heavenly utterances, rather than human tongues. The Unlearned Human Languages view. This view teaches that Bible Tongues were the supernatural ability to suddenly be able to speak the message of God in a human language of which the speaker had no prior understanding.

      • Wow! Very, very well said! Just what I couldn’t put into words! The unleaned human languages view is what I belive the Bible is saying, based on the Greel words and historical and Biblical context.

        • I think the use of an interpreter when in public is how they know it’s not a false tongue.

          On another note, 1 Corinthians 13:1 (KJV) “Though I speak with the tongues of man and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.”

          Same scripture but in my study bible (NLT) 1 Corinthians 13:1 “If I could speak in any language in heaven or on earth* but didn’t love others, I would only be making meaningless noise like a loud gong or a clanging cymbal.” This clearly states to me that there are two types of speaking in “tongues” that is being talked about in the New Testament. The first one is in another language that is unknown to the person speaking in that tongue as in Acts 2:4-8. The other is the “gift” of tongues where it is the language of the angels as spoken of in 1 Cor. 13:1. Notice that even in the New Living Translation it speaks of a “language in heaven OR on earth.” I don’t think it could be any clearer than that but there is so much controversy over this. This is a really good discussion.

          This is why my church that is non-denominational/pentecostal believes what it believes.

    20. From what I had understood from the word of God, speaking in tongues is not just for some people. It’s for everyone! Jesus said we must all be born of the water and the spirit. Speaking in tongues is the evidence that you have been filled with the Holy Spirit. So when you truely have experienced the Baptism of the Holy Spirit you speak in tongues. Something I once heard that helped to understand this clearly is that you can drink a glass of water, but its a different thing to jump into a pool of water. When you have given your life to Christ, He is in you, but the baptism of the Holy Spirit is that you are also now in Him. The evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is speaking in tongues.

      • 1 Corinthians 13:8-9 “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.”

        1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

        Tounges was a gift given to people long ago, but it isn’t very common anymore. Not everyone has it, because we no longer need it. All we need is faith, hope, and love, and that is enough.

        • You have reiterated my above point, and you said it concisely. And @runningforhim, she didn’t say anything about needing something other than Jesus. She merely stated that the remaining gifts of the spirit are faith, hope, and love; and we do need FAITH in Christ, HOPE that all will know Him, and LOVE of Christ and all people.

        • You didn’t go on to verse 10 in 1 Corinthians chapter 13 where it says, “But when the end comes, these special gifts will all disappear.” And we all know that “the end” refers to the Great Tribulation in Revelations. This is why my church believes that tongues is still around and use this practice.

      • Ok, no offense, but this is so flawed theologically. What you are saying is that you need something else besides the blood of Jesus, beliveing that He did for oyu on the cross. You undermine the whole point of the Gospel.

    21. I speak in tongues sometimes and I think it’s really cool. People pray over me in tongues a lot too and it’s very encouraging, even though I don’t know what they’re saying. I prefer to only do it on my own though – I’m still pretty uncomfortable with doing it around other people and like Paul said, you should only do it in private if there isn’t someone to interpret it.

    22. Thank you so much Jenn for posting this! I recently was also gifted with the ability to speak in tongues… and it was like WOW. I talked to my mom about it (she is comfortable with speaking in tongues in public and interpreting), but it’s nice to hear this from someone whose gift is more like mine – more quiet I suppose. Thank you so much!

    23. All of this seems to be creating an awful fuss… can’t we all just agree to BELIEVE? So many people have so many opinions on whether tongues are for everyone or how they are supposed to be used or whether they even exist anymore… All I know is based on what I have seen and experienced, which I know to be the Holy Spirit at work.
      But do I really know anything compared to God? Who am I to know what gifts God gives and how they are to be used? But I do know that my God works in mysterious ways, ways that none of us could ever fully comprehend. And I decide to be content with that knowledge alone, knowing that even if I try, I simply CAN’T know everything…
      Let’s let God do the gift giving. Let’s just do the receiving.

    24. I just went to an awesome camp, it’s called Camp 220(Stands for Galatians 2:20). This was my first time and I had heard so many stories about it. There was four years ago when a girl was demon possessed, and all the pastors circled around her and prayed over her, and they cast out the demon. At worship they’re people speaking in tongues.

    25. People believe that speaking in tongues as mentioned in Acts multiple times,refers to a holy, sacred language that only God and the Angels understand. This is a False doctrine -_-
      why?…First. God is Omniscient, which means that God understands and knows everything, he does not need one particular language in order for him to understand you, He understands and knows every language more than we do, anyone who says otherwise is painfully in denial.
      Second. When the speaking in tongues is first mentioned In Acts it says from Chapter 2:1-11 it speaks of the events of the apostles receiving the holy spirit when it mentions them Speaking in Tongues its not referring to some “holy language” its referring to diverse languages, if you read further it will show you how people from different areas where astonished, not at them speaking in an unknown language, But them speaking in every mans language that was present there at the Day of Pentecost.
      1st Corinthians 14:22 is right, it is a sign for those who don’t believe just like those men in chap 2 of Acts that were from different nations who were astonished and praised God for them seeing the apostles speak in every mans own language, even though the apostles were Galilaeans. I just wanted to share this because this is what Ive learned and What God has allowed me to understand through his Holy spirit.

      • When you speak in tongues, you speak directly to God, and yes God can understand all that we say, but the special thing about this language is that satan cannot understand. He knows and understands all the languages except this special one. That’s the beauty of being able to speak in tongues, satan doesn’t know what we are praying.

        • Unfortunately this is incorrect, Satan was once an angel of God, in fact he was one of the 3 cherubims which today are called Archangels. The fact of the matter is Satan knows the scriptures inside and out, sometimes even more than we do, that’s why there so many churches that teach false doctrines because Satan stopped persecuting the church of God directly and started to do so in a godly sense by establishing other religions that twist and pervert God’s truth like this false doctrine of tongues. If you would, read Acts 2:1-12 closely again and you’ll see that it’s not speaking of the apostles speaking in an unknown language but a KNOWN language for every man that was present to understand. In I Corinthians 14 the word UNKNOWN is mentioned 6 times in italic showing that these words were added in this chapter because they are not found in either of the early Greek, Hebrew, or Latin text. This language that people claim is “holy” and only God understands is one of MANY false teachings. It is also claimed that through having one of these services and speaking in tongues is a way of proving that a certain person has the Holy Spirit when the bible says otherwise “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law”. [Galatians 5:22-23] So what is this saying? It’s saying that if that person shows to have all of these qualities, they have the Spirit, these are the signs of a person having the Holy Spirit, not glossolalia in which the person who spoke in “tongues” doesn’t even remember or know what they said, God is not a God of confusion.

        • The purpose of speaking in tongues was to tell others about Christ, not to speak to God. And if you want to talk to God without Satan or his demons hearing, then pray in your head. God knows all your thoughts. Besides, what is so bad about Satan knowing that you talk to God, the Creator of the universe and the Savior of the world, the only One who Satan must listen to, and the only One who can and will cast him into hell.

    26. I find angels and all things that have to do with spiritual beings fascinating, so I’m curious what does speaking in tongues sound like? Is it like a language completely different from any known, or a mixture of them or something else?

      • It sounds different for different people. My Pastor a number of years ago went to a church in another country(I think it was Brazil). There was a person there praying in english(fluently). My Pastor went to talk to him after and realized that the guy speaking in english had been speaking in tongues because they couldn’t understand each other at all.

    27. Hi I’d like to share something with y’all. two years ago I was starting to get depressed. I was aggrivated at God and lost faith, I nearly got caught up in some “scary” stuff. One night i was horrified that I would go bad and realized I was doing wrong. Half of the night I was talking to God and begging for forgiveness. That morning I woke up with an incredible feeling and knew that God was with me and had forgiven me.I’m now (ALMOST) 14. Right now I’m in that time in life when u wonder if you will amount to anything. But I know I’ll get through all these situaton!! Watch out world! This girl is Christian and has God beside her! Mmmmmm-hmmmm! 🙂 Thanks project Inspired!! love yall!!

    28. I got the the gift of speaking in tongues when I was 12 years old. Im now on a ministry team of middle & high schoolers, & we minister to children. We do many things include run a church camp for 2 weeks. This past year, i had the privilege to pray for a 7 year girl who got her prayer language. I know many kids who ave gotton their prayer language, & it’s one of the most incredible things to ever witness: Kids getting completely filled & overwhelmed by the power of the Holy Spirit!
      P.S. Be praying for me because I’ll be teaching my youth group about the Holy Spirit & Spiritual gifts on Sunday 😀

    29. just to add in my understanding/opinion, bc maybe it’ll be helpful/encouraging to someone. i agree with a lot of what the article says.
      i believe that speaking in tongues without interpretation is meant for just you and God. i dont mean that to say it should only be done alone. (for example, sometimes when there has been interpretation in my church, tongues were spoken by only one person in the congregation and were kinda shouted, or spoken loudly, but then so is the message sometimes when talking to a large crowd of people, i dont think tongues without interpretation should be like this, i think it can be done in public/around others, but when in public should be done more quietly, at a volume that doesnt distract others, often at prayer meetings where everyone is kind of praying to themselves some people will randomly pray in tongues but its at the same volume as the other people praying so it doesnt disrupt whats going on)
      also there was some talk about the baptism of the holy spirit in the comments. from the teaching ive heard and my understanding of what ive read about it, being filled with the holy spirit is not the same as salvation, as being born again. ive heard it explained that all christians have the holy spirit inside them, but being filled/baptized by the holy spirit is slightly different and therefore can often come after salvation and obviously doesnt come to everyone (whether that means it cant come to all christians or not, i wont claim to know). also, from what ive read, tongues is only a sign of an initial filling of the holy spirit. i kno some people who received it once and spoke in tongues but never again after that, and others who speak in tongues often. i think this and scripture show that there is a difference between the evidence of tongues that come with baptism in the holy spirit and the gift of speaking in tongues.
      also i love that the writer put the definition of new tongues. it just provides more evidence that tongues as referred to in the bible doesnt just mean a different earthly language. also, if that was the case, then why would scripture talk about it as just between you and God, why would God have you talk in say Chinese if it was just between you and him?
      also my personal thoughts on praying for the gift of the spirit: i prayed for it a while before i received it, but it actually wasnt until i was just praying for more of God, for more of His Spirit, and to be used more by the Holy Spirit that I first spoke in tongues. that’s why i love what she said about desiring better gifts.

      • I think if you read all the comments above then you can see the disparity between the viewpoints. For instance, I am a Baptist and I believe that for a while there were tongues for the purpose of telling others about Christ. But tongues were taken away and now if you want to tell a person that speaks another language about Christ, then you’ll just have to learn the language. Another view is that tongues was a heavenly prayer language and is still in use today. Most other views are somewhere between these two extremes.

      • Then again, I am also a Baptist like Cyndi but I DONT believe that tongues were taken away! I’ve heard people speak in tongues myself. One important thing to remember is that speaking in tongues and praying in tongues are two different things. The first needs an interpreter (and should never be done unless there is an interpreter) and is for encouragement of the church, the second is personal between you and God.
        A large belief is in the pentecostal church and they believe that speaking in tongues is the sign of baptism by the Holy Spirit, as if the only sure-fire way to know you’re saved is by speaking in tongues. This however is not correct. Speaking in tongues is just one of many gifts of the Holy Spirit and it is up to the H.S. to choose which ones go to whom.

    30. Okay so I’m kinda confused about the interpreter’s role in all of this…. Is the interpreter kind of like a translator? And if so, where was the interpreter in Acts 2:4-8? Or was that situation just different from most because tongues can be understood as other languages at certain times…..?

    31. I don’t understand speaking in tongues. I’m from a Methodist church and every time the worship leader says to speak in tongues, I see people starting to speak something in a language I’ve never heard before. I asked my mom about it a few times and she said it just comes naturally. I searched around and found out that not everyone can speak in tongues. Is this true? I’m so confused with this topic!

    32. I have not always understood about speaking in tongues but in later years i have come to understand much more about this unique gift that God gives to whom he chooses. I went to my mother in laws church this past Sunday, just visiting and in the Sunday school class the man teaching the class spent the whole lesson mocking people who speak in tongues. I could feel my heart beating faster and getting very upset. every time he started to poke fun he gave a little snicker of a laugh, he eventually said that women should be quiet in church and that most of the time it is women who speak in tongues and if they were quiet it would probably no even happen.

      Finally after I sat there as long as I could I ask if he had researched the 3 types of tongues, he said no he hadn’t. Another person mentioned the interpreter, whom he brushed off like he tried to do to me. I think that what is in this bible is for us too. I don’t believe there is anywhere it says that people will not speak in tongues after a specific amount of time.

      I pray in tongues, not always but it seems like it happens when I am so very broken over something and just can’t seem to get out what I need to. I always cry when I pray in tongues, don’t ask me why I don’t know…but it happens. Here are a few verses aboput the speaking of tongues in the NT….

      1 Corinthians 14:2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.

      Mark 16:17
      And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues;

      1 Corinthians 12:28
      And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.

      Acts 2:4King James Version (KJV)

      4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

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